Listen up guys, the positive effects of a brisk daily stroll are pretty mind-blowing; It’s just so easy and natural that most of us overlook walking and its health benefits. Walking from your house to your car shouldn’t be the only time you use your feet.
Ready to have your mind blown? If we walk just 5 city blocks a day, we may lower our risk of heart attack by 25 percent. Brisk walking for an hour a day, five days a week, can also cut the risk of stroke in half, according to a Harvard study of more than 11,000 men. Combined with healthy eating, physical activity like walking is key to keeping your weight, or that spare tire, within healthy limits.
Here are five clever ways to walk more:
1. Finish your commute on foot
Park your car a few blocks away from your destination, or hop off the bus a couple stops early to get some steps and a nice boost of energy before work. Now you have two reasons to park a little further away – you’ll save money and get exercise.
2. Stroll to grab some lunch
If there’s a restaurant, cafe or grocery store a few blocks from your office, walk there for lunch. Eat your meal, then walk back. Kick it up a notch by taking the stairs instead of the elevator. You can also try the three flight rule: If you encounter a stairwell no taller than three flights, conquer that bad boy and don’t think twice about it.
3. Get some fresh air after dinner
Research has found that walking after dinner is particularly beneficial, as it can help lower your blood sugar, speed up digestion, and aid in fat loss. Plus, you’ll get some fresh air, which helps to lower stress levels after a long day.
4. Track your steps with an app
Make a game of it and challenge yourself by walking a pre-set number of steps each day, setting new targets when you’re ready. A few choice options for Android and iOS devices include MapMyWalk, Every Body Walk! and Walkmeter.
5. Put your kids’ pre-game time to good use
Put the warm-up time before your youngster’s soccer matches or hockey games to good use by going for a walk with your spouse or whoever is joining you on the sidelines. Every good cheer squad needs a warm-up of their own, after all.